Simulation of species-rich grasslands with GRASSMIND

GRASSMIND is an individual- and process-based model designed for simulating the structure and dynamics of herbaceous communities including:

  • competition between individual plants for light, space, soil water and nitrogen
  • different management regimes (mowing, irrigation, fertilization)
  • climatic changes (drought events, increased temperatures, etc.)
Grassmind concept.

Grassmind concept.

Grasslands have been received increasing attention in the context of biodiversity experiments. In such experiments, ecosystem functions like productivity and carbon storage often increase with species-richness.

In order to examine differently emerging relationships between species diversity and ecosystem functions in grasslands, we developed the process-based and individual-oriented grassland model GRASSMIND analogous to our forest model FORMIND. Therein, individual plants compete for light and space aboveground and for soil water and nitrogen belowground. For the latter, we coupled GRASSMIND with the soil model CANDY and Century.

Taubert, Frank, Huth
A review of grassland models in the biofuel context.
Ecological Modelling 2012

GRASSMIND was developed at the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ Leipzig.